I cannot believe how fast this month has gone. Granted we were out of state for most of it, but even then, it feels like we accidentally took a wormhole to May. I’ve been in a bit of a panic since glancing at the post count for April. Even with Brad’s help, I was still way below my self-imposed monthly quota. Managed to claw my way back over last week with several finds from our trip to Las Vegas in Feb/Mar. Needed one more in these last couple of days before May. Checked out the queue – Brad has several ready for us, but he is still on assignment and want to keep him focused on the Ptarmigan objective. That left me three choices – a grey bird that continues the Desert NWR theme, a grey bird with quite the proboscis or a complete left turn to some creepy crawlies. Grabbed a coin, made a few tosses and welcome to today’s featured feathered friend.
Powers of deduction can quickly reveal the winner. No bursts of color and by birding standards a pretty normal bill…yep, we are going to stay with the Desert National Wildlife Refuge theme from the last couple of posts. While reading the latest finds from this site – specifically the Corn Creak Field Station area – three birds stood out. The Western Bluebird, the Mountain Bluebird and what I thought was a surprising addition based on our location.
We just got back from our trip to St. Louis were Linda ran the kids at the Poodle Club of America Agility Nationals. A big congratulations to Linda and Raven who qualified 2 out of the 3 runs they competed in. Not only did they qualify, they took a first and a second. His third run was just about there, but Raven decided to “improvise” a little. Ruger had two runs and he lived up to our low expectations ha. He just turned two years old and a bit ..hmmm.. let’s go with Linda’s word – scatterbrained. Absolute speed demon in the ring but, just gets distracted easily and seems to enjoy bringing comic relief to the audience. That’s to be expected and once Linda gets that worked out, he is going to be a force to be reckoned with. It was also a bit nostalgic for Ruger as he was reunited with his brother (was actually running against him). We had a great chuckle as his brother (Orion) is EXACTLY the same – full of speed but prefers his own path through the obstacles. Can’t wait to see these two compete next year! Oh, and even Raven had a reunion as he got to see his mother, now 14.
With the accolades out of the way, I should get to the featured feathered friend of the day.
You might have seen this one coming if you caught some of the hints in the last post. Carrying the theme from the last post, I am pleased to bring you another Bluebird for today’s topic.
Hit the jump to learn more about our gorgeous blue tinted specimen.
Howdy folks! Even with Brad’s help I am running behind this month. Having been gone nearly the first three weeks of April and now heading out to St. Louis for a few days so Linda can compete in the Poodle Nationals at Purina Farms, I’m a few posts behind. Trying to get at least one more in while I am waiting for some glue to dry on this year’s signature Halloween prop – a piece that is definitely ending up to be a lot more effort than initially imagined. Cue Linda eye roll “Every one of your projects turns out more than you expected!!!!” True, but most of the time … in the end…”wooooorttthhhh IT” ha (like in this link here). We’ll see how this is going a few months down the road. For now, will try to clear the head of glue fumes and bring you an incredible feathered feature of the day.
Don’t worry, if you hit the jump I’ll get you closer to our feature.
I has been a very long time since I was “birded out”. After three solid weeks of birding through the southeast, I have to admit I’m probably there. I’ve walked nearly a third of the miles I usually run in a month and that is saying A LOT. Was it worth it…well, I was sitting at 240 for the Average Year when we embarked on the migration trek and thanks to some unexpected good fortune before we even made it to Dauphin Island, the count now sits at 292. For those that have been following along, yes, that is a mere 8 little birdies away from the initial goal – and only 4 months in. Unfortunately, The Beast developed a glitch and my rotator on my previously repaired shoulder feels like a knife stab on every training run stride.
Gear can be fixed and pain eventually subsides, you’re really here to see the incredible feathered feature of the day!
Eh, to be honest, this one is not that incredible and thanks to an unexpected surprise, it isn’t even a new bird to the blog. At least it has a cute crest. Could be worse, there were a few little brown jobbers in the queue ha.
The intent was to focus on the background for this rather drab looking birdy per the norm with new checks on the life list. Processed all the pics, added them to the new post, went to add the tags and “what is this..the Juniper Titmouse tag is already in my history” Sure enough, Juni made its appearance back in August 2014 (from a trip back in Nov 2012) – link here.
Hit the jump to see more of this bird that will NEVER make it into Linda’s tin. She has a strict policy of only tinning the colorful ones.
Hi all, we have finally made our way to Dauphin Island for the migration. A bit of a letdown for our first couple of days, but things are likely to improve with the current storm. Not to wish additional hardships on our Gulf crossers, however, the high winds and rain will likely result in fallout conditions as soon as the weather improves. Going to let Brad take the Intrigued controls back over while I go in search for an umbrella.
Take it away Brad…
Legend has it, if Ben Franklin would have had his way, the turkey would be the national symbol of the United States. We all know the turkey “lost out” to the bald eagle, but you have to admit we ended up with a much better symbol. However, the turkey has since taken over, at least in population numbers.
In 2022, Jan and I ended up seeing turkeys in five states. That’s correct, five different states. Some of the states may very well be obvious, but I bet at least one will surprise you. It sure surprised me. I’ll walk through our year of turkeys from East to West.
But first, a little turkey history and lore. What is a group of turkeys called? Hands up for “gaggle”? The word gaggle is thought to be based on an old English word “gagelen” meaning to cackle. Maybe a “gang,” but only if in neglected urban areas. What about just a plain old flock? The word “flock” is good generic term for any grouping of birds. How about a “rafter”? Ding-ding-ding-ding-ding. We have a winner. A group of turkeys is properly referred to as a rafter of turkeys. I guess this is like a “murder” of crows, which doesn’t make sense to me either. Some think the term “rafter of turkeys” comes from the fact that they like to sleep in tree branches or other high-up places. Yes, you read that correctly. Turkeys like to sleep off the ground, usually in trees. Or where the rafters of a house or barns would be.
Hit the jump to read more about Brad’s year of Turkeys!
Howdy folks! Last we talked, we were heading out to Dauphin Island for the Spring migration. Big thanks to Brad for manning the Intrigued Headquarters while we hopped through base camps during the first leg of our adventure. You will be hearing more from Brad as we head “back” to Dauphin. Those that do not fear the blue “wedge piece” might think we overshot as are current site is just outside Gainesville, Florida. Reminiscent of Jeep’s popular spare tire cover – “Not all who wander are lost”. Definitely not lost, we are here for a dog agility event and tomorrow we’ll start heading back through the panhandle, quick airport stop to pick up Ron and then make our way to Dauphin. Have I mentioned lately how great retirement is ha. That isn’t to say there hasn’t been a good bit of birding along the way… understatement – there has actually been a LOT of birding to the point of already being completely exhausted. Birded Kentucky, birded Alabama, birded Georgia and for our first time ever, birded northern Florida. In addition to a world class farmer’s tan, I’ve given an adrenaline shot right to the heart of the Average Year efforts (link here – note, not current). The official count now sits at 260 after adding 20 checks since are departure – several of them lifers. Feeling a lot more confident now being a mere 40 species from the 300 goal and still haven’t reached Dauphin.
I finally have a few hours to relax while waiting for the dogs to take their runs. Being on the road and a number of their energy calming walks clipped thanks to an outrageous number of Gators in this state, this event might turn out to be a clown show.
Hit the jump to read more about our funny looking specimen.